July 2020| Issue 18
Here to Help You
Throughout the month of July, Councilors have continued working to support their communities amid the COVID-19 pandemic and the social movements bringing change throughout the nation.

Despite the difficult circumstances, many of the events featured below serve as a reminder that the City of Providence is resilient and will continue to grow and evolve through these challenging times.

The strength displayed by the citizens, businesses and organizations that have built the City of Providence assuredly shows the City's ability to overcome the many challenges it is currently facing.

The Providence City Council has continued to work to turn the City into an anti-racist institution; passing many ordinances and resolutions addressing racial inequity, as well as using their public platform to speak on these critical issues.

The Council has also worked to support local business in the City of Providence through actions such as the creation of the Micro Business Loan Program.

Lastly, Councilors have remained committed to improving neighborhood quality of life, by holding community meetings, implementing traffic calming measures, and allocating Council funding toward local infrastructure improvements such as park renovations.

The 15 members of the Providence City Council were elected to represent and serve the many valuable neighborhoods of the City. As we continue to move forward in these uncertain times, the Council is steadfast in its dedication to this duty.

As always, the Council office is open and ready to help constituents. The council website is frequently updated with news and resources. Do not hesitate to reach out to your Councilor regarding any community concerns.

Visit our website for more resources, news, and information about your Councilor: https://council.providenceri.gov/

Or call our office at: 401-521-7477
Meet Your City Councilor
Providence is separated into 15 distinct Wards, comprising 21 unique neighborhoods, each a diverse and dynamic community. We believe that access to your Councilor is paramount.

By clicking on the link below you will be able to learn more about your Councilor, and have the opportunity to send them an email to share your thoughts or concerns.

Don't forget to participate in the 2020 Census! Fill it out here.
Council Events
Easter in July
On July 11, Council President Pro Tempore Corriea held a socially distant Easter Egg Hunt at George J. West Park! He was joined by Council President Matos, Councilor Salvatore, Councilman Taylor, State Representative John Lombardi and State Senator Sam Bell and plenty of eager Easter Egg hunters!
DePasquale Fountain Reopens
Council President Matos and Councilor Miller were at DePasquale Square on Federal Hill to celebrate the reopening of the DePasquale Fountain on July 10. This Federal Hill landmark was damaged in a car accident last year, but has been brought back to life for all to enjoy!
The Continuing Fight for Social Justice
SISTA Fire RI Public Altar
On July 12, Council President Matos and Councilor Miller were at Dexter Park where SISTA Fire RI built a public altar to honor Black and Indigenous women and girls who have been impacted and lost due to state-sanctioned violence.

Truth, Reconciliation and Reparations
Councilwoman Nirva LaFortune and Councilman Pedro Espinal where on hand when Mayor Jorge Elorza announced the City of Providence’s new commitment to a Truth, Reparations and Reconciliation process centered around Black and Indigenous history in Providence at Dexter Park on July 15.

A New Kind of Community Meetings
There are currently social distancing guidelines in place to keep Rhode Islanders safe and healthy. However, many Councilors have found a way to meet with their constituents while still following guidelines from the CDC and Department of Health. By hosting smaller, outdoor community meetings, and asking all attendees to wear face coverings, Councilors have been able to reconnect with their constituents in a safe and healthy way!
On July 8, Councilor David Salvatore met with residents of Enfield Ave, Mink Road, Stonelaw Ave, Walton St, and Academy Ave for a community meeting.
On July 9, Councilor Salvatore held another community meeting with his Leige St neighbors regarding traffic and parking.
On July 15, Councilman Nicholas Narducci met with his constituents on Job St regarding upcoming traffic calming measures.
On July 28, Councilman James Taylor held a Ward 8 community meeting. He was joined by State Representative Scott Slater, State Senator Ana Quezada, Providence Police Lieutenant Barros and Captain Fernandez.
Supporting Local Business
Island House Restaurant Receives Council Micro Loan
Ricky Bernard and Marcia Ricketts, owners of The Island House Restaurant at 242 Broad St were awarded a City Council Micro Loan on July 1. This loan program was created by the City Council in collaboration with the Providence Revolving Loan Fund as a way to help small local businesses get through the COVID-19 pandemic. With their loan, Ricky and Marcia plan to get outdoor seating for their restaurant, an app for faster takeout to better cater to their student customers, plexi-glass shields and other social distancing measures to keep their employees safe and healthy.

Grand Opening of El Ninja
On July 16, Council President Matos, Councilwoman Castillo, Senator Ana Quezada, Representative Grace Diaz, Director of Administration Brett Smiley, and Mayor Jorge Elorza were at 1007 Broad St in Providence to celebrate the grand opening of El Ninja, a Latin-Asian Fusion restaurant!

Welcoming Patriot Storage to the Neighborhood
Council President Matos welcomed Patriot State Storage, a new rental storage facility, to the Hartford neighborhood on July 25.

Council Updates
Council Majority Leader Ryan Introduces Resolutions Calling for the Renaming of Obadiah Brown Road and Obadiah Brown Field
Majority Leader Jo-Ann Ryan (Ward 5) introduced two resolutions to rename Obadiah Brown Road and Obadiah Brown Field after former Mayor Patrick J. McCarthy. An Irish immigrant, McCarthy became a prominent attorney in Providence, he served on the City Council and was a member of the Rhode Island House of Representatives. In 1906 he was elected as the 24th Mayor of the City of Providence. He was a staunch advocate of progressive “good government,” which included supporting an eight-hour workday for the city’s laborers.

Council President Matos Proposes Resolution Urging Expansion of Police Officer Education
Council President Matos proposed a resolution urging the Rhode Island General Assembly to expand the types of degrees eligible for education reimbursement to law enforcement officers. In an effort to expand social service education and improve educational outcomes for Rhode Island law enforcement, the Council is urging the Rhode Island General Assembly to revisit Rhode Island General Law 42-28.1 et. seq., which establishes an incentive pay program by which municipalities can reimburse officers for obtaining educational credits. This resolution requests that the Rhode Island General Assembly consider expanding education reimbursement to police officers for courses and degrees in social work, psychology, public health and other social service fields.

Councilor David A. Salvatore Honors Rev. Brian J. Shanley, O.P. for his Honorable Service as President of Providence College
Councilor Salvatore introduced a resolution to recognize Rev. Brian J. Shanley, O.P. for his honorable service as the President of Providence College. Rev. Shanley is the longest-serving president in the 100-year history of Providence College and is also the only Rhode Island native to ever serve as president. On June 30, 2020, Father Shanley’s tenure as president of Providence College ended following fifteen years of guiding the school through a period of remarkable change and growth. Under Father Shanley’s presidency, the College built upon its proud heritage as a Catholic, liberal arts institution, sustained its commitment to its ideals, and modified both practices and facilities in ways that have enhanced its national profile. As a result, Providence College created a sustainable platform for long-term success.

City Councilors Call on the City of Providence to Transform into an Anti-Racist Institution
Councilors proposed a resolution calling on the City of Providence to commit to developing an anti-racist institution that prioritizes investment and support structures, that align with the Just Providence Framework and the City’s Climate Justice Plan.

The resolution points out specific markers in history where city leaders repeatedly failed residents of color. Black and Indigenous communities were displaced to build industrial sites, highways, and roads. Schools that serve predominantly students of color lack resources. resolution calls on the City to commit to transforming to an anti-racist institution by following the “Continuum on Becoming an Anti-Racist Multicultural Organization,” to support and invest in structures, programs, and policies that align with the Justice Providence Framework and the Climate Justice Plan.

Finally, the resolution also requests that the City follow the Spectrum of Community Engagement to Ownership outlined in the Climate Justice Plan and move towards a collaborative governance decision-making process that centers those who are most impacted by the current health, environment, and economic crises.

In the News
Councilwoman Nirva LaFortune Interviewed by Providence Journal
On July 4, Councilwoman LaFortune was featured by the Providence Journal in an article by Vanessa Lillie. Councilwoman LaFortune discussed what made her want to run for office and her experiences as an immigrant, a single working mother and the first Haitian American to hold office in Rhode Island!

Council President Matos Featured on Bartholomewtown Podcast
On July 7, Council President Matos spoke with Bill Bartholomew of the Bartholomewtown Podcast to discuss social justice rallies, COVID-19, the City budget and a host of other timely issues.

Councilwoman Mary Kay Harris Published by Providence Journal
Councilwoman Mary Kay Harris was published by the Providence Journal on July 27, sharing her powerful thoughts on racial justice, restitution and the state of the Black community in 2020.

Upcoming Council Events
Upcoming City Meetings
The City Council is currently in August Recess and there are no scheduled Council Meetings at this time.

However, some Council Committee's will continue to meet during the recess.

Upcoming City Council Events
Monday, August 10
Ward 11 Community Meeting re: Citizen Bank Building
6:00 PM (On Zoom)

Thursday, August 20
Ward 15 & 6 Mattress Drive
8:00 AM
Open Meetings Portal
If you want to find information about past, present and future meetings then the open meetings portal is a must. Using the below link you can access meeting minutes, agendas, documents, videos and other useful information at the click of a button.
Providence City Council
©Providence City Council 2020